Published: Tuesday, August 18, 2015 at 2:08 p.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, August 18, 2015 at 2:08 p.m.
During most discussions about concealed carry on colleges campuses, the voices of students who support gun rights and want a means to defend themselves are usually missing, according to Rebekah Hargrove a graduate student at Florida State University.
Hargrove is president of the Students For Concealed Carry at Florida State University.
Once she earns her Master’s degree, she plans to continue at FSU toward a PhD in a public health-related field, such as bio-terrorism, and then go to work for the Centers for Disease Control.
Yep, she’s sharp as a tack.
Born in Connecticut but raised in Sarasota, the 22-year-old grew up with guns, shooting with her family.
Hargrove and her friends who support the Second Amendment, “Just want to be treated like everyone else around town,” she said.
“We want the right to defend ourselves,” she said. “The instant we decided to go and get an education, we lost that right.”
Her Students for Concealed Carry at FSU has around 100 members, including some who are under 21 and not yet old enough for a Florida Concealed Carry License.
“They want the right to defend themselves on their 21st birthday, so they support what we’re doing,” she said.
The whole campus-carry “debate” is chock-full of myths and misunderstanding, she said.
“The biggest misconception — that we’re not responsible enough for concealed carry — that’s the biggest!” she said. “They act like the ‘stress’ of college life will lead to a shooting spree, or that we’ll threaten a prof. If we are so irresponsible, or criminals, would we be following the law that prohibits us from concealed carry?”
Hargrove pointed out that eight states already allow campus carry. “There have been zero incidents,” she said.
I asked her how safe she feels going to class every day in a very well publicized gun free zone.
“I don’t think it’s a gun free zone,” she said. “There are criminals that carry guns. There are already guns on campus in the hands of people with bad intent,” she said.
The campus carry movement is picking up more support. On Monday, The Congress of Racial Equality, Inc. sent a letter to every member of the Florida legislature announcing their support. CORE is a New York nonprofit corporation founded in 1942, with its national headquarters in Harlem, New York City.
— If we don’t run into each other at the range, you can reach me at (941) 284-8553, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by regular mail, 1741 Main St., Sarasota, FL 34236. You also can follow me on social media at facebook.com/TheGunWriter or Twitter.com/ht_gunwriter